Nordic walking consists of carrying walking sticks that resemble ski poles. Taking longer steps and using the sticks to propel yourself forward, it uses more upper body strength than regular walking. The upshot of this is you burn more calories, without overtly increasing putting in more effort. Once you have the walking technique mastered, it creates the feeling of being more nimble on your feet.
As well as providing more stability on uneven terrain, the walking sticks provide propulsion and help diminish the impact on your joints. So if you’re a bit unsteady on your legs, uncoordinated, carrying extra weight or suffer with knee or hip problems, Nordic walking could be your ticket to fitness.
Initially Nordic walking started out as a way of cross country skiers keeping their fitness levels up during the summer months.
Nordic walking technique
Your walking sticks or trekking poles should be connecting with the ground in time with your feet. When your right foot hits the ground, plant your left stick.
Choosing walking sticks
Choose trekking poles that are strong, height adjustable, lightweight with a wrist grip. Taken care of, your sticks can last you a long time, so the initial outlay is certainly worthwhile. Walking poles come with rubber tips that can be removed for better traction off-road.
Before you start Nordic walking
Practice before you hit the pavement to get your stick and walking rhythm in sync. Attempt a trial walk around the block before venturing out to negotiate unfamiliar terrain.